None of these items were enough for an article on their own, but they are all interesting and talk about the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Baseball America posted their first shot at a mock draft for the 2019 amateur draft. We posted the top 50 draft prospects from MLB Pipeline earlier this month and noted multiple times that it’s a very early look and that still holds true for another month or so. That being said, it’s never to early to see the depth of talent in the draft and dream about who could drop to the Pirates with the 18th overall pick.
BA has the Pirates taking Tyler Dyson, a right-handed pitcher for Florida University. That won’t really get anyone excited this far out from the draft because they say he has “starter traits” and was dealing with a shoulder injury in the spring. It’s interesting to note that BA has Nick Lodolo going 19th. He turned down $1.75 M (the maximum that they could offer on the final day) from the Pirates in 2016 to attend TCU.
MLB Pipeline posted a list of potential breakout players in the minors, picking one for each MLB team. They chose Cole Tucker for the Pirates. They noted his second half surge at Altoona, along with his performance in the Arizona Fall League.
MLB.com has an article about the rise in quality of players from the Bahamas. It mostly focuses on two prospects from other organizations, but there is a mention of Tahnaj Thomas, who was acquired by the Pirates from the Cleveland Indians in the Luplow/Moroff/Gonzalez trade last month. We went in depth on Thomas in our 2019 Prospect Guide, where he is listed as one of the top 50 prospects in the system.
The Pirates had two players from the Bahamas in their system recently, but both have been released. Larry Alcime didn’t pan out as one of their top international signings in 2015, while infielder Kyle Simmons was signed at the same time for a much lower bonus. Alcime had some injury issues, but the real reason he was let go was due to a slow bat that couldn’t handle anything above average velocity. Simmons had some defensive skills, speed and a nice eye at the plate, but he was limited in his upside and slightly older than Alcime.
One final thing and it’s a video about shifting outfielders during games, not just moving them over, but swapping positions based on hitters to get the most out of your best defenders. This isn’t about the Pirates, but I thought it was worth three minutes and 20 seconds of your time.